Navigation Links
Gene-targeting pioneer Mario Capecchi shares 2007 Nobel Prize in Medicine
Date:10/8/2007

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah - Mario R. Capecchi, Ph.D., distinguished professor of human genetics and biology at the University of Utahs Eccles Institute of Human Genetics and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, has won the 2007 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.

The announcement was made this morning by the Nobel Assembly at the Karolinska Institute, in Stockholm, Sweden. The prize recognizes Capecchis pioneering development of knockout mice technology, a gene-targeting technique that has revolutionized the study of mammalian biology and allowed the creation of animal models for hundreds of human diseases, including the modeling of cancers in the mouse.

Capecchi shared the Noble prize with Oliver Smithies, D.Phil., of the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and Sir Martin Evans, Ph.D., at the University of Cardiff, Wales.

The Nobel committee cited the three for their discoveries of principles for introducing specific gene modifications in mice by the use of embryonic stem cells.

This is a tremendous honor for our University, for our Department of Human Genetics, and, specifically, for all the members of my laboratory, past and present who have contributed to this work, said Capecchi upon receiving notification of the Nobel Prize early this morning. The strong support and genuine interest of the University and Salt Lake City communities have been marvelous.

It is a great honor to share this prize with Drs. Oliver Smithies and Martin Evans. We have all been very fortunate in having a longstanding scientific friendship and in being able to profoundly contribute to each others work. This prize is a tribute to our collective efforts.

The Nobel tops a long list of prestigious honors for Capecchi, who, as a child, was forced to wander four years on the streets of Italy after the Nazis imprisoned his mother in a concentration camp. His achievements in gene targeting were recognized with the 2001 Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research and the 2001 National Medal of Science, Americas highest award for lifetime achievement in scientific research, presented by President George W. Bush. In 2003, he also received the Wolf Prize in Medicine, Israels highest award for medical science, and the 2003 Pezcoller Foundation-AACR (American Association for Cancer Research) International Award for Cancer Research. Capecchi also received the 2005 March of Dimes Prize in Developmental Biology.

The University of Utah proudly joins the Nobel Foundation and the entire international scientific community in congratulating Mario Capecchi on his outstanding scientific achievements, said University of Utah President Michael K. Young. His accomplishments are particularly remarkable in light of the tremendous challenges he faced in his youth. He has drawn upon these life experiences to propel himself into doing the most extraordinary thingsultimately enabling people across the globe to live healthier, longer, and more productive lives. Mario Capecchis groundbreaking work in gene targeting will have an incalculable impact on generations to come. We are deeply honored and grateful that he is one of ours.

Capecchis development of gene targeting in mouse embryo-derived stem cells allows investigators to create mice with mutations in any desired gene and gives them virtually complete freedom to manipulate the DNA sequences in the genome of living mice. Knockout technology makes possible detailed evaluation of the function of every mouse gene at any stage of development or in the adult. The technology not only has made possible the production of animal models for human disease, but it also is providing Capecchi and other researchers with insights into understanding fundamental biological questions, including development of the brain in the embryo or its function in the adult.

Capecchi was born in Verona, Italy, in 1937. His mother was imprisoned during World War II, but found him after the war and they eventually came to the United States to live with his aunt and uncle. Capecchi received his B.S. degree in chemistry and physics from Antioch College in 1961 and his Ph.D. in biophysics from Harvard University in 1967. He completed his thesis work under the guidance of Nobel laureate James D. Watson, who, along with Francis Crick, determined the structure of DNA. Capecchi became a junior fellow at Harvard and was an associate professor of biochemistry there when, in 1973, he left to join the University of Utah faculty.

A scientist at the Eccles Institute of Human Genetics at the University of Utah medical school, Capecchi also serves as co-chair of the Department of Human Genetics and is a founding member of the Brain Institute at the University of Utah. He holds the Helen Lowe Bamberger Colby and John E. Bamberger Presidential Endowed Chair in the Health Sciences at the U of U.

Capecchi is a member of the National Academy of Sciences. Among his numerous other honors are the Fifth Annual Bristol-Myers Squibb Award for Distinguished Achievement in Neuroscience Research (1992), Gairdner Foundation International Award for Achievements in Medical Science (1993), General Motors Corporations Alfred P. Sloan Jr. Prize for Outstanding Basic Science Contributions to Cancer Research (1994), Kyoto Prize in Basic Sciences (1996), the Franklin Medal for Advancing Our Knowledge of the Physical Sciences (1997), and the University of Utahs Rosenblatt Prize for Excellence (1998).


'/>"/>
Contact: Phil Sahm
phil.sahm@hsc.utah.edu
801-581-2517
University of Utah Health Sciences Center
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Papers of DNA Pioneer and Nobel Laureate Francis Crick Added to National Library of Medicine’s Profiles in Science Web Site
2. Researchers pioneer new gene therapy technique using natural repair process
3. Diabetes researchers pioneer islet cell xenotransplantation in primate studies
4. Rice bioengineers pioneer techniques for knee repair
5. Nobelist discovers antidepressant protein in mouse brain
6. Comments, experts and background on the 2006 Nobel Prize in chemistry
7. Nobel Laureate finds elegant explanation for DNA transcribing enzymes high fidelity
8. New research says winning a Nobel Prize adds nearly 2 years to your lifespan
9. LEGO-Like building blocks to halt cell growth wins Hebrew University prize
10. Australian wins prestigious prize in biodiversity informatics
11. Recent breakthroughs in common adult leukemia highlighted in New England Journal of Medicine
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/31/2016)... , March 31, 2016  Genomics firm Nabsys has ... CEO, Barrett Bready , M.D., who returned to ... the original technical leadership team, including Chief Technology Officer, ... Product Development, Steve Nurnberg and Vice President of Software ... the company. Dr. Bready served as CEO ...
(Date:3/21/2016)... Unique technology combines v ... security   Xura, Inc. ... digital communications services, today announced it is working alongside ... customers, particularly those in the Financial Services Sector, the ... within a mobile app, alongside, and in combination with, ...
(Date:3/14/2016)... NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or the "Company"), a company ... of a new series of commercials on Time Warner Cable ... .  The commercials will air on Bloomberg TV, Fox Business ... show. --> NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or the "Company"), ... the airing of a new series of commercials on Time ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/25/2016)... Phoenix, AZ (PRWEB) , ... May 25, 2016 ... ... Arizona, Dr. Michael Fitzmaurice recently became double board-certified in surgery and surgery of ... 31, 2015. Dr. Fitzmaurice is no stranger to going above and beyond in ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... ... May 25, 2016 , ... Scientists at the University of Athens say ... mesothelioma may be hampering the research that could lead to one good one. Surviving ... read it now. , The team evaluated 98 mesothelioma patients who ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Lady had been battling arthritis since the age of two ... knee. Lady’s owner Hannah sought the help of Dr Jeff Christiansen of Superior ... cruciate ligament and help with the pain of Lady’s arthritis. Dr Christiansen suggested that ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... , ... May 24, 2016 , ... ... diabetes, and traumatic injuries, will be accelerated by research at Worcester Polytechnic Institute ... engines of wound healing and tissue regeneration. , The novel method, developed by ...
Breaking Biology Technology: